Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Malvern Fleamarket

I had been hoping to transfer some photos from my new-to-me mobile phone, ones which I took at Malvern Fleamarket at the weekend (so I didn't have to walk around with my camera round my neck).  However, the computer doesn't seem to recognize the mobile, so I will have to speak to Eldest Daughter (who gave it to me) and see where I am going wrong.

Anyway, I definitely took a photo of this quilt back in September, and it is still for sale - or was last Sunday anyway.  I still like it lots, but we had other fish to fry.

We were up at 4 a.m. on a very cold and as it turned out, foggy morning.  When we ran into fog along the Towy Valley we were hopeful we might drive out of it, but no.  In fact, it got far worse the other side of Brecon and we averaged 35 mph for the journey, which took us over half an hour longer than usual. When we got out of the car, the sun began to cut through over the Malverns, and we were hopeful (for all of 5 minutes) that it would be a nice day.  As it turned out it was bitterly, deeply cold, foggy, damp and miserable.  Oh, and did I mention bone-numbingly cold?

Surprisingly there were quite a few outdoor stalls but it took a real act of willpower to be a stallholder that day, indoors or out.  We had a good ramble round, and found a few things of interest.  When we went inside we found a fabulous Georgian hoop back Windsor chair with a patina you could shave in. We love Windsor chairs and have collected them ever since we have been together.  We know a good one when we see it.  This was made entirely of yew, with an elm seat with its typically wild grain. This chair spoke to us.  This chair said, "take me home . . . "  So we did.  We will enjoy it as long as we can. In fact it was a chair day, for some reason, and four chairs came back with us, two full size and two childrens' chairs.  What selling is like in January in the Unit, we will see, but we have some nice stock there, so fingers crossed.

The good folk who sell home made bread, buns, sausage rolls etc had their stall there and I bought a sausage roll and one of their scrummy Hereford buns, which are like Chelsea buns, only with cinnamon and apple and cider in the swirls.  After an hour or so we picnicked in the car, and I was mighty glad I had taken along a flask of steamingly hot Oxtail soup to accompany the sausage roll.  Mind you, it was hard to decide whether to drink it or put my frozen toes over the steam to thaw out!  Fortunately I had had the presence of mind to pack my walking boots and some hand-knitted pure wool socks and they made quite a bit of difference to my feet, which hadn't enjoyed close contact with the ground in sensible walking shoes.  Just as well, as all those feet trampling round soon made the outside aisles muddy.

I lost my dearly beloved for an hour after he took a chair back to the car.  I said I would meet him inside the Avon hall - the one with the heating in - in 20 mins' time.  He thought I meant to look round the other inside stands first and so took his time, and then went in there whilst I was back at the car leaving him a written "where the hell are you?" message.

The scene back in September when we were in t-shirts . . .

We finally met up by the sweetie stall, just as I was complaining to a dealer friend that you couldn't rely on men to listen to instructions!

All in all, it was a good day out, but I haven't been that cold in many, many years.  The next Fleamarket there is in February and I hope it will be a tad warmer.  We will at least have a bit more daylight - it's not much fun driving all that way in the dark.

Photo of the chair to be added later.


A beautiful chair.  At some point in its distant past - and by a truly expert carpenter, as you can barely see the join - the left hand front corner was restored, but the wear pattern and patina show just how long ago this was, and tbh, it is part of its history.  The flash has made the top half look lighter than it is (it is as dark as the seat and legs). That half moon stretcher is known as a Crinoline or cow Horn stretcher, and dates it to 1810 - 1820 (George III).  The colour on this is superb and we got it at auction price.  One for the kids to fight over when we're gone!

For Christmas I finally decided I would have frames for two limited edition Gillian Mcdonald prints I had bought several years ago.   We were hoping we might come upon frames that fitted, but no chance especially with this one which is about 41" in length.  Eldest daughter recommended a company and I got frames for both prints very reasonably.  They arrived this week, and I soon got them in the frame and on the wall the next day.  The yellow wall is not as fierce a yellow as it appears in the flash, and the lovely lilacs and purples of the painting of Rhum and Eigg look well on it.

Photo of other pic tomorrow (Moorland Skyline I, which is in my office).


  1. I would be terrible at fleamarkets, i would see something I like and buy it that quilt is lovely I couldnt have left it there :-) the chair sounds very interesting

  2. Dawn - she wanted £50 I think, which was too much for me to indulge my personal needs. Ha - we spent that and a good deal more on our chair instead!, but that was an investment and actually around the auction value. In the Old Days I could have gone mad collecting old china, which used to be my "thing". Now I stick to Torquay Ware - the older and more unusual the better.


  3. Cold feet or fingers--or anywhere in between--is enough to spoil an outing for me. It takes forever to warm up once thoroughly chilled. The chair sounds lovely--we have recently seen new furniture made from elm--interesting, as America lost our elm trees many decades ago to some bug or blight.
    Menfolk have a way of getting 'lost' in shopping venues--I find Jim wandering about in
    Wal Mart looking completely witless if I leave him while I go to another part of the store!

  4. Sounds a good day outapart from that cold. Ithink we are being very lucky so far this winter up here in the North east -long may it continue. Looking forward to seeing the chair photograph.

  5. I must looks out for the February event at Malvern. I only live on the north side of Worcester so it would be easy for a pop over and mooch around. Jx

  6. Jan - it's Feb 15th, the next one. You'd love it, I'm sure!

    Pat - I'm still envious of you having such a good auctioneers nearby (Tennants). Ours here in Wales are a motley crew!

    Sharon - I don't do cold, I really don't, but we gritted our teefs and I have to say my Oxtail soup hit the spot, and that Hereford bun afterwards. I must try and make some of those. We had Dutch Elm disease which wiped out many of our Elm trees too - I take it you had the same thing. This chair was made when there was still plenty of Elms in the countryside.

  7. That chair is very lovely and seeing the sunshine from the summer was lovely. A distant memory as I sit here listening to the wind HOWLING outside and worrying whether water will make its way in somewhere else. Hope you're thawed out now! xx

  8. I would like to 'stroke' that old chair--what a lovely sheen to the wood.

  9. I sit in my Windsor chair in front on the computer every day, love it, stroke its wood, following the curve of the arm rests, at the back the initials WHB are carved in great letters in the centre - who was he? ;)